As part of $15M project, state to install more than 200 security cameras at government buildings

The state is undertaking a $15 million project to upgrade security systems at 31 facilities statewide, including the Labor Department and Health Department.
Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 5:16 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 29, 2022 at 5:21 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The state is undertaking a $15 million project to upgrade security systems at 31 facilities statewide, including the Labor Department and Health Department.

Originally, the plan was to spend $1.5 million to install high-tech surveillance cameras in and around the state Capitol. Most of the old cameras were broken and employees reported safety concerns.

The cameras are motion-activated and monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week by dispatch.

But during the pandemic, vandals targeted some of the state buildings, including the Labor Department.

“Throwing stones at windows, setting fire to doors, things of that nature,” said state Comptroller Curt Otaguro.

The vandalism and security threats are the reasons why the upgrade project expanded.

Unemployment office vandalized in August 2020
Unemployment office vandalized in August 2020(None)

Otaguro realizes some people don’t like the idea of cameras being in so many locations.

“It’s public safety as well as employees safety,” Otaguro said, adding employees were especially concerned at night while walking in the parking garages.

A total of 225 cameras will tap into the same system.

“If there is a situation after hours that occurs, it’ll sound the alarm,” Otaguro said, adding dispatchers can then immediately send a sheriff’s deputy.

COVID relief funds from the federal government have been appropriated to cover the cost of the upgrades.

It will take at least a year to get the full system online.

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